Associate Professor Emerita of History and Ethnic Studies Profile Image
Associate Professor Emerita of History and Ethnic Studies History and Ethnic Studies

Victoria Smith is an Associate Professor of History and Native American Studies at UNL. She earned a B.A. in History (1992) and M.A. in American Indian Studies (1995) at University of Arizona and a Ph.D. in American History from Arizona State University (2002). She held the Edgerton Junior Faculty Chair at UNL from 2004-2006 and co-authored and edited the award-winning No One Ever Asked Me: The World War II Memoirs of an Omaha Indian Soldier (Nebraska Press, 2005) (Army Historical Foundation Distinguished Writing Award/Biography and Memoirs, 2005). Dr. Smith's research concentration is in 19th-century Native American West, with a specialization in Arizona and Apache history. Most recently, Dr. Smith authored Captive Arizona, 1851-1906 (Nebraska Press, 2009). Dr. Smith has earned several teaching awards, and builds her coursework around the evolution of federal Indian policy in the 19th and 20th centuries. She is a Cherokee, Delaware, and Lumbee descendant through the Harmon/Anderson/Oxendine/Smith line, familiar to genealogists for their long history of service to the United States Armed Forces.


Dr. Smith regularly teaches an undergraduate survey course in Native American history that spans the eras from pre-contact to 1975. She also regularly teaches two upper division courses, one on the topic of Great Plains Indian history, and another on the history of Native American education. She also teaches the American history survey, America After 1877, and various graduate research and reading seminars.

  • January 2008, Awarded Certificate of Recognition for Contributions to Students, The Parents Association and The Teaching Council of the University of Nebraska.
  • May 2006,  No One Ever Asked Me awarded 1st place prize for Best Memoir/Biography by the Army Historical Foundation.
  • Captive Arizona: 1851-1906 (University of Nebraska Press, 2009).
  • Introduction to Betty Grant Henshaw, Children of the Dust Lubbock: Texas Tech University Press, 2006).
  • No One Ever Asked Me: The World War II Memoirs Of an Omaha Indian Soldier, collaboration with Hollis Stabler Sr. (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2005).
  • April 2012, Panelist, The Politics and Power of Life-Writing,” Institute for Ethnic Studies Colloquia Spring 2012, UNL; it was at this panel that I first publicly spoke about the U.S. prison system, in preparation for a scheduled Fall 2013 panel, The Prison Panel, which will eventually become an annual event within the University of Nebraska Coalition for Prison Reform (see Research).
  • March 2012, Panel Moderator, “Preparing to Look Forward on the Great Plains,” Great Plains Studies Symposium, March 29-30, University of Nebraska-Lincoln Annual Conference.
  • October 2010, Panel Chair, “Citizens of the West: Yaqui, Ho-Chunk and Cherokee Women’s Transition from Native to American,” Western History Association 2010 Annual Conference.
  • September 2010, Panelist, “Native Peoples, Language as Resource: Oral History as History”, Institute for Ethnic Studies seminar, UNL
  • February 2009, Panelist and keynote speaker, “Native American Women Warriors,” UNL College of Journalism and Mass Communications.
  • October 2008, Panelist, “The Art, Craft, and Ethics of Biography and Autobiography: A Conversation with Debby Applegate, Pulitzer Prize Winner,” sponsored by UNL English Department.
  • April 2006, “The Role of Captivity in the Chiricahua Wars,” at Arizona History Convention, Tucson.
  • December 2005,  Commencement Address, UNL College of Education, Native American Graduates.
  • September 2005,  Panelist, University of Nebraska, Institute for Ethnic Studies, “The Importance of Ethnic Studies,” September 28th and 29th, 2005.
  • October 2004,  Panelist, University of Nebraska Inter-Tribal Exchange, “Beyond the Myth: A Look at the Realities of Christopher Columbus and the ‘Discovery’ of the Americas.
  • October 2004,  Panelist, Western History Association Annual Conference, Las Vegas, NV “Sexuality and the Invasion of America.
  • March 2004,  Chair, Antebellum Native American History Panel, Missouri Valley History Conference, Omaha, NE.
  • February 2004,  Guest Lecturer, Missouri River Basin Lewis and Clark Center Regional Training Academy, February 15-19, 2004, Nebraska City, NE, “Indian Women in the Northern Fur Trade.”
  • January 2004,  Annual Conference, American Historical Association, Washington, D.C.; interviewed applicants for position in Western American History, History Department, University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
  • November 2003,  Session moderator, “Culture, Race and Region,” University of Nebraska-Lincoln Plains Humanities Alliance First Annual Regional Humanities Conference, Lincoln, Nebraska.
  • March 2003,  Panelist, "Ozarkin: The Persistence of Cherokee Clan and Law in the Twentieth Century Missouri Ozarks," Missouri Valley History Conference, Omaha, Nebraska.
  • February 2003,  Guest speaker, “Indian Women in the Fur Trade,” Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society, Hastings College, Hastings, Nebraska.
  • April 2001,  Panelist, Arizona History Convention, “Destroying Angels: The Evolution of Indian Scouting in Arizona, 1860s-1870s.”
  • February 2001, Guest Speaker, “Blood, Guts and Tenacity: The Saga of the Pennington Family in Southern Arizona,” Arizona Historical Society, Tempe.

Ph.D., History, Arizona State University, 2002


19th Century, American West, Native American History, Arizona History, Apache History